Day 30 - Hope


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Europe » Spain
October 25th 2012
Published: October 26th 2012
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Route: Arzua - O Pedrouza

In principle I had planned to finish walking in 30 days plus taking 2 rest days for a total of 32 days. Tomorrow I hope to finish in 31 days total. No rest days, but some somewhat shorter days, as today. Did about 20 km in 4.45 hours. Tomorrow another 20 km to go to Santiago.

The spirit on the Camino seems to have changed today. Their seemed to be a sense of urgency and hurry. I have not been able to detect why, but I can guess. Maybe "a horse smelling the stable".

The only thing I noticed was that the people that have been on the Camino for sometime already did not share the spirit, or at least showed it less.

For me the day was a bit strange. After a 30 km+ day yesterday, focussing on only 20 resulted somewhat complicated.

Walked with people from "extremes" of the globe, New Zealand and Vancouver Canada for quite a while. Surprising was how much the Canadians knew about Chavez. Not my favorite topic. To make matters worse, after the Canadians I walked an elderly couple. Turned out that the gentleman was very british and his wife from Colombia. They met when he was working for Unilever in Bogota. Difficult to escape a political conversation there.

Strangely enough, I did not encounter anybody that I have met in Sarria. Maybe I see some of them in the village or at church tonight. No sign of Sandra from Brazil. I thought of her when I saw a sign tied to a tree offering taxi services. Until Sarria I had not seen these signs, but now they appear everywhere. Must be a sign of a different type of pilgrim. A Spaniard called them "turgrims", i.e. people that only walk the last 100 km.

The ones I did see were the boys and girls on their school trip. The high spirits were gone and the moaning and groaning was general, nevertheless, peer pressure made everybody go on; at least that was what one of the teachers that accompanies the children (in a car by the way) told me.

My surprise of the day came shortly before I arrived at my pension. Having asked the direction of the pension, I made a wrong turn and ended up at a dead end street. A gentleman had seen me coming and waited for me. The first thing he explained that I had taken a wrong turn. Subsequently he gave me new directions. That he asked me where I was from. Upon saying from Holland, he started talking to me in Flemish/Dutch. Turns out he lived 35 years in Antwerp. His children still live there. Must be on of the first waves os Spaniards that went to work in the northern european countries. Weird experience in the middle of nowhere.


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